Energy prices soar and EU poses 'joint gas purchase'
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To the dismay of climate activists, Germany has been pushing for gas to be considered a green investment and for it to be included in the EU green taxonomy. The EU taxonomy for sustainable activities is a system of classification that is established to determine which investments are environmentally sustainable.
This system was created in the wake of the European Green Deal in July 2020 and was made to help prevent “greenwashing” among different investments.
One of the biggest reasons why Germany is campaigning for more gas is because the country is heavily reliant on imported natural gas, particularly from Russia.
In 2018, then German Chancellor Angela Merkel struck a controversial deal with Moscow to secure access to energy for Germany through the Nord Stream 2 gas pipelines.
Experts criticised this decision for a number of reasons, not only due to the fact that it significantly increases Germany’s fossil fuel emissions, but it also severely hampers Germany, and by extension the EU, from acting against Russia when it began applying pressure on Ukraine.
Tonny Nowshin, a campaigner for 350.org in Germany, criticised her administration for failing to deliver on its climate policies.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, he said: “The previous German government installed policies that didn’t help build out clean energy, and such policies must be quickly done away with.
“Even the new German government knows more must be done to reach the 1.5C limit that scientists, and citizens, are insisting on.
“Importing gas and supporting massive infrastructure like Nord Stream 2 is going the wrong direction, and instead decentralised clean energy like wind and solar have to be immediately built out to solve the energy problem.”
“The phase-out of all fossil fuels, including fossil gas, must be accelerated, which means an end to the development of new fossil gas infrastructure.
“We cannot allow the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea pipeline as well as the planned LNG terminals in Stade and Brunsbüttel to lock us into decades of increased carbon and methane pollution.
“All public and private money from Germany supporting fossil fuel projects in home and abroad must be cut now.
“Instead the government needs to acknowledge its historic responsibility and step up its financial support for countries most vulnerable to the impacts of the climate crisis.”
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Despite the fact that the current German government, led by Olaf Scholz is still advocating for natural gas in talks at Brussels, Mr Nowshin feels optimistic.
He said: “There is reason to be hopeful.
“But so far there are only vague commitments, like the goal of phasing out coal “ideally before 2030”.
“This is a big step forward compared to the previous government’s promise – to phase out coal by 2038, yet Germany is not on track to reach the 1.5c goal, so people need to keep the pressure on.”
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